Stargate is an arcade game released in 1981 by Williams Electronics. Created by Eugene Jarvis, it is a sequel to the 1980 game Defender, and was the first of only three productions from Vid Kidz, an independent development house formed by Jarvis and Larry DeMar. This video game has no connection to the subsequent Stargate franchise that began 13 years later.
The game is also known as Defender Stargate and Defender II. The latter name was used in home video game releases, due to legal issues (according to the bonus material for Midway Arcade Treasures, Williams wanted to "make sure they could own the trademark" on the Defender name). The name Defender II has been used on all of its home ports, and game compilation appearances; however, there were never any Defender II arcade units. To complicate matters, the Atari 2600 port was originally sold under the Stargate moniker but was renamed to Defender II for a later re-release.
This sequel adds new enemy ships to the alien fleet such as firebombers, Yllabian Space Guppies (note that Yllabian is based on "Yllab", the word "Bally" spelled backwards, a friendly poke at Williams' then-competitor, Bally Midway), Dynamos and Space Hums. The Defender ship is now equipped with an Inviso cloaking device, which renders the ship invulnerable when activated, but has a limited charge. A Stargate will transport the ship to any humanoid in trouble. There are now two special stages, the Firebomber Showdown and the Yllabian Dogfight, that occur every fifth and tenth wave. As in the first game, if all the humans are captured the planet explodes and turns all the landers into mutants.
The game is much harder than its predecessor.
The player flies a small spaceship above a long, mountainous landscape. The land is inhabited by a small number of humanoids. The landscape wraps around, so flying constantly in one direction will eventually bring the player back to their starting point. The players ship can fly through the landscape without being destroyed.
A number of enemy ships fly over the landscape. The player's responsibilities are twofold:
Destroy all aliens
Protect the humans from being captured
The player is armed with a beam-like weapon which can be fired rapidly in a long horizontal line ahead of the spaceship, and also has a limited supply of smart bombs, which can destroy every enemy on the screen. The player also has a limited supply of "Inviso" cloaking energy, which makes the ship invisible, and able to destroy any ships it comes in contact with.
At the top of the screen is a radar-like scanner, which displays the positions of all aliens and humans on the landscape.
Save the humanoids from the impending aliens in the sequel to Defender. The task is still rescuing humanoids before Landers can turn them into Mutants, while avoiding and shooting other foes, however you must now carry humanoids to safety through the Stargate of the title.
Entering this Stargate not only warps you to the nearest humanoid in jeopardy, but can also warp you ahead (while on the first 15 levels) if you enter it with 4 or more humanoids, and give you extra lives if you warp with 10 humanoids, so there is a trade-off between guaranteeing the safety of existing humanoids, and trying to advance your position
There are more enemies on screen than ever before. The Inviso button makes you invisible to enemies, but also to yourself, so you will have to follow your bullets to work out where on the screen you are.
March 18, 2018 Subject:
Controls for Stargate
press F3 several times (3?) until you get to regular score screen. Then press 5 (not numpad 5) to add coins, press 1 to start game.
Default controls are
UP and DOWN arrows to move your ship up and down the screen
ALT/OPTION to thrust your ship
CONTROL to fire
SPACE to fire a "Smart Bomb"
SHIFT to go into Hyperspace
Z for Reverse
press TAB and go to Input (This System) to make changes. I went with Q and A for up/down, space for reverse, left arrow for thrust, right arrow for fire - just to get the same feeling as the regular arcade game controls. Keep thrust pressed and rapidly vibrate middle finger of right and on the fire button. Use up/down and reverse to stop.
April 19, 2017 Subject:
How to play Williams games
It can seem (like defenderrrr says) that this game doesn't work, but it's easy to get it running. When the Williams machines (like this one) were run the first time they made sure save memory was cleaed (you'll see the "factory settings restored" message) . Now on desktop Mame, you'd just close it, reopen it, and away you go, but this dowloads it fresh each time. The solution is when you see the message, press the F2 key which will do a soft reboot, and the Stargate intor will appear, ready for action. This is the same across Defender. Joust, Robotron etc.
November 22, 2015 Subject:
it wont play